Most of us know how to write an email to a company because of the technology made available to all of us. However, writing EFFECTIVE e-mails is something that needs to be learned and appreciated.
Because e-mail is the most commonly used form of communication, it is often misused, and sometimes even abused. Here are five of the most important rules of business e-mails to help you send out effective and professional emails.
1. Proofread every message. No matter how short, or long, the e-mail message is, it is important to read them again and edit as necessary. This includes double-checking the recipients of your e-mail and the subject line. You don’t want simple errors or carelessness be the cause of your misunderstandings.
2. E-mails are not always private. This is why you must always think before you click! Because you are using your company’s e-mail system, they have the right to search mailboxes. In most countries, those internal e-mails are part of the company’s property. Keep your e-mails professional and business-related. Add disclaimers to your internal and external e-mails to protect you and your company from liability.
3. Do not send when upset. Do not send angry or unsuitable messages. If you are upset or angry, read your message twice and ask yourself if you would really say that message to the person’s face. Or you can opt to wait for a few hours before sending the message, so that you can calm down. Remember that once you hit that “send” button, your message is all over and you can never retrieve or change your mind from sending it.
4. Manage the information you are sending out. Respect the other person’s time by sending concise and relevant information. Improve your writing skills so you can make messages easier to read (for instance, using short paragraphs). If you are sending big files, inform the other party first by sending a short note and offering to send the file through other means. Try not to have too many attachments in your email, or at least zip these files.
5. Treat your e-mail recipients as you would like to be treated. Obviously, you wouldn’t want to receive spams and late replies to your messages, right? So check your e-mail regularly and do not spam or contribute to e-mail overload. Respect other people’s inbox space by sending messages only when necessary. This means do not send junk mail and immaterial responses. Be careful when you use the “cc” and “reply all” button—do those people really need to read your reply?
Be brief, be careful and be courteous—keep these in mind and you’ll be on your way to writing an effective e-mail to a company.